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Higher TaxaTeiidae, Tupinambinae, Gymnophthalmoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
Common NamesE: Cusco Tegu Lizard
Portuguese: Teiú, Teju 
SynonymTupinambis cuzcoensis MURPHY, JOWERS, LEHTINEN, CHARLES, COLLI, PERES JR, HENDRY & PYRON 2016: 19 
DistributionPeru (Cusco), Ecuador, Brazil (westward into the Amazon Basin as far as Humaita, Amazonas, Mato Grosso)

Type locality: Quincemil, Cusco, Peru (~ -13.250–70.735) at 780 m elevation  
Reproductionoviparous. Duellman 2005 reports a clutch size of five from a 274 mm SVL female (cited by Murphy et al. 2016, without saying which name Duellman used). 
TypesHolotype FMNH 168228, a male collected by L.E. Pena in August, 1962. 
DiagnosisDiagnosis. (1) Five or six supraoculars, the second is the longest and the largest in area, (2) last supraocular contacts one or two ciliaries and is exceptionally small; (3) the ventral side of the head is usually uniform white, yellow or olive green to gray; (4) largest prefemorals slightly imbricate, tend to be taller than long, and are hexagonal; (5) two to four enlarged supratem- poral scales are bordered by two or three rows ventral rows of smaller scales; (6) three to five occipitals contact the interparietal; (7) rostral visible from above; (8) dorsum has well defined dorsolateral and dorsoventral rows of spots (white in preserved specimens, yellow in life) that may fuse to form a partial stripe; (9) the anterior corner of the orbit is usually over upper labial three or the seam of upper labials three and four. This species corresponds to clade 1 in the molecular analysis.

Variation. Lamellae on fourth finger 14–18; lamellae on fourth toe 29–39; total pores 9–21; occipitals at parietal usually one (one specimen has two); upper labials 8–9 (rarely 7), longest usually fourth (rarely the third); lower labials 6–7; chin shields four pairs in all specimens examined; rows of antegulars 9–12; loreal usually longer than frontonasal.

Comparisons. Tupinambis cuzcoensis is the only species discussed here that has the first pair of chin shields equal to or shorter than the postmental. All other species have the first pair of chin shields longer than the postmental. It is also distinctive in having the lowest average number of scales around the mid-body (92.6) and the highest average number of vertebral rows (119). The dorsal pattern is distinctive and consists of transverse bands with a row of dor- solateral spots on each side. The second supraocular is the longest and the largest in area, in the other three species the first supraocular is the longest and the second is the largest in area. The ventral side of the head is uniform in pigmentation. 
CommentDistribution: see map in Murphy et al. 2016: 12 (Fig. 7), Silva et al. 2018 (Fig. 10).

Diet: Duellman 2005 found six arthropods in one stomach (cricket, spiders, beetles, an ant and an orthopteran) (cited by Murphy et al. 2016, without saying which name Duellman used). 
EtymologyNamed after the type locality. 
  • Duellman, W. E. 2005. Cusco Amazónico: The Lives of Amphibians and Reptiles in an Amazonian Rainforest. Comstock Pub Assoc.
  • Freitas, M. A. de, Venancio, N. M., Abegg, A. D., Azevedo, W. S, Pereira, V. O., Zanotti, A. P., Veloso, A., Schwarzbach, L., Oliveira, A. G., da Silva, R. C. C., de Amorim, V. R. G. and de Moura, G. J. B. 2020. Herpetofauna at the Rio Acre Ecological Station, Amazon Rainforest, Brazil. Herpetology Notes 13: 33-48. - get paper here
  • Gonzalez R. C. et al. 2020. Lista dos Nomes Populares dos Répteis no Brasil – Primeira Versão. Herpetologia Brasileira 9 (2): 121 – 214 - get paper here
  • Murphy JC, Jowers MJ, Lehtinen RM, Charles SP, Colli GR, Peres AK Jr, Peres Jr AK, Hendry CR, Pyron RA 2016. Cryptic, Sympatric Diversity in Tegu Lizards of the Tupinambis teguixin Group (Squamata, Sauria, Teiidae) and the Description of Three New Species. PLoS One 11 (8): e0158542.doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0158542 - get paper here
  • Silva, Marcélia B.; Marco A. Ribeiro-Júnior, and Teresa C. S. Ávila-Pires 2018. A New Species of Tupinambis Daudin, 1802 (Squamata: Teiidae) from Central South America. Journal of Herpetology 52 (1): 94-110 - get paper here
  • Torres-Carvajal O, Pazmiño-Otamendi G, Salazar-Valenzuela D. 2019. Reptiles of Ecuador: a resource-rich portal, with a dynamic checklist and photographic guides. Amphibian & Reptile Conservation 13 (1): [General Section]: 209–229 (e178) - get paper here
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